Photo: Steve Gullick
IS SHE REALLY GOING OUT WITH HIM?
British Punk Goth legends The Damned are back. Not only are the seminal group currently midway through a tour that scopes the length and breadth of the UK, but they are due to release their first album in a decade. The record is called Evil Spirits, and is due to be released in April. Greatly anticipated by many, it has has been produced by music hero Tony Visconti. Think Bowie, Bolan and Iggy.
Of all the Punk bands to emerge in London throughout the 70’s, The Damned justly stood out from their colleagues in chaos. As far as British bands go, they rank high on our list for a number of reasons. They were the first band to put out a single, an album, tour the US, breakup and makeup before many had even finished recording their debut albums. Moreover, the speed, songwriting and technical skill in which they played with was a far cry from their crude counterparts. Listening to 1977’s Damned Damned Damned makes Never Mind the Bollocks sound like an album of waltz classics. Their sound was distinctive because of the joy they found in playing and in music. They never compromised their sense of independence from the surrounding scene and never resorted to employing shock media tactics. They were the real deal- genuine working class guys who haven’t lost their sense of rebellion to this day.
Though that’s not to say that the members were never lacking in debauchery- if even only a few of the stories involving nudity, urine, spitting and habitual mayhem are true, the antics of drummer Rat Scabies alone are enough to make even the bat-munching Prince of Darkness Ozzy Osborne wince. Looking the part ever since they formed, vampiric Dave Vanian was legitimately a gravedigger- and who could forget Captain Sensible in his bright red beret and droll sunglasses. Over the last forty years, The Damned have released ten solid studio albums. Transcending genres, they evolve from Punk to Post Punk to Goth, pioneering them for the world, fusing them with Psychedelia and Garage Rock. Each album is au courant- measurably moving on as the time passes. All without losing their edge, their energy and their obvious will to make music.
Led Zeppelin loved them, Lemmy was briefly in them and even said that he always thought the Damned were the true Punk band.
Suffice to say, they are one of the most brilliantly proficient and innovative bands Britain has produced over the last century. Which is why the news of their 2018 return is an exciting one.
The album includes their newly released ‘Standing on the Edge of Tomorrow’- which is available to listen to now, and you can check out the post-apocalyptic sci-fi video on Youtube now. It’s a pleasure to see Dave, the Captain, Paul, Monty and Pinch back in full force.⠀
So if you love The Damned as much as we do, we advise you take the following steps:⠀
1) Check out the new video for ‘Standing on the Edge of Tomorrow’ on Youtube- directed by Dave Vanian himself.⠀
2) Pick the nearest show to you from the few dates left and get your tickets at axs.com- dates posted below⠀
13th February – Southampton, O2 Guildhall⠀
14th February – Bexhill De La Warr Pavilion⠀
16th February – Koko, London*⠀
17th February London, O2 Forum
3) Pre-order the album Evil Spirits at from https://thedamned.lnk.to/evilspirits⠀
If you’re new to the Damned and don’t know where to start, here is where we suggest you begin.
Damned Damned Damned
The Black Album
Machine Gun Etiquette
Neat Neat Neat
Wait for the Blackout